tv The Last Word MSNBC September 6, 2011 3:00am-4:00am EDT
an inmate defended himself against a violent attack. now authorities want to know if he took it too far. >> that's no longer an assaulted on you. now you're beating the hell out of him. >> while another inmate takes creative steps to send his love to the girlfriend he allegedly, accidentally shot. ♪ >> two cell mates deal with drug addiction. >> i'm an animal. i don't care about anything or anyone. >> and motherhood. by day, boston, massachusetts is both a modern
metropolis and home to some of america's earliest historical sights. but like all sittings, there's an underbelly of crime. located just outside downtown is a key landmark in that battle, the suffolk county jail. >> the jail is a maximum security facility, it holds anyone arrested and held on a bail they can't make. it is very frequently someone charged with homicide. >> unlike prison where all inmates have been convicted and sentenced, most jail inmates have only been charged with crimes and are innocent until proven guilty. suffolk county has an average daily population of 700 detainees along with 200 other inmates who are convicted and serving short sentences. >> we're the largest sheriff's department? the northeast. so we're moving a lot of people
in and out of here and trying to do a lot with them in the relatively short period of time we have them. the people who get that job done every single day, do a remarkable job. >> in some units, a lone officer supervises inmates, like a beat cop on the streets, it allows him to build rapport and actually has been proven to reduce fighting. >> i'll talk to you later. >> but in jail, fights still break out. >> policy dictates that both for his own protection and that of the inmates, the officer on duty not intervene until backup arrives. within seconds officers swarm the area. the inmates involved are quickly restrained and removed from the area. close that door!
>> one of the combatants is 28-year-old jenoris hayes. hayes and the other inmate will be treated for minor injuries while authorities piece together what happened. key to that process is a review of jail surveillance footage. >> this is our 2-1 unit. it's just about 5:00 p.m., dinnertime. these three gentlemen are designated as unit workers. they help to serve the food and the like. the tallest gentleman is hayes. he's about to be attacked by a detainee with a weapon, a sock with batteries. it provides distance so the victim cannot stand back. he was able to deflect the initial attack and mr. hayes gains the upper hand in this fight. though this started as he was
the victim of an assault, he quickly becomes a participant in an altercation. the officer continues to observe the scene and await the ab rival of our response teams. you see mr. hayes now has gained the upper hand in this altercation. as the response team comes in, you see them secure the participants fairly quickly, efficiently, and snay eel be headed off to segregation. >> having received treatment for minor injuries, hayes is secured back in his cell. >> at a attorney point you had to stop, you didn't. he was on the chair cowering from you. that's no longer an assault on you. now you're beating the hell out of him. that's what happens. >> deputies will question the other inmate who has asked not to be identified on camera. then members of the disciplinary board will determine what sanctions, if any, will be.
>> i don't know what happened. i turned around. it happened so fast. i was just in the moment. >> i'm usually the type of person that mind his own business, not too antisocial because i am a people person. sometimes i can be the shoulder that person by lean on by saying hello or good morning which might brighten up their day. >> hayes's easygoing attitude stands in contrast to the alleged crime that brought him to jail in the first place, attempted murder. he's pled not guilty and has been in jail for nearly four months awaiting trial. >> here i am again. and because of my past history and my record, you know, they kind of somewhat using that against me thinking i'm either a threat or a menace to society which i'm really not.
>> hayes's long-term future is up to the courts. for now he's facing possible time in the jail's segregation unit if the disciplinary board sanctions him for the fight. he will have a hearing within the next few days. >> about the only thing i can do is hope for the best. >> hayes is hardly alone facing an uncertain future. a short distance away in the women's wing, 26-year-old crystal o'reilly is awaiting trial on several charges including armed robbery. if convicted, she faces five to ten years in prison. >> allegedly i robbed two banks in boston. i had always -- not necessarily dreamed, but talked about it, joked about it, robbing a bank. a lot of people i know have done it. >> authorities allege that surveillance footage shows o'reilly robbing a boston bank with a handgun and a second bank
a few days later. o'reilly has pled not gill toy the bank robberies, be she does have a prior armed robbery conviction. she says she turned to robbery to support a drug habit. >> i use heroin and coke. and the way i use, i'm an animal, i don't care about anything or anyone. i don't care who i step on, who i abandon. it doesn't matter. >> o'reilly says her drug addiction has even caused her to steal from her own mother. >> i actually wrote a check. it was only 90 bucks. i called her account. she said i had overdrafted her account and now it's $150 and the fees keep piling up. my family doesn't have it like that. she gets by paycheck to paycheck and she pays for everything. who am i to take her money? she doesn't know who i am anymore. she wants her daughter back.
>> in the meantime her mother is raising o'reilly's 2-year-old son. the good news is her incarceration at the suffolk county jail has kept her off she can relate to. >> our view is of downtown boss town. bean town. and the men. >> we got a good cell. we can see the men, too. >> the neighborhood that i'm from, the armpit massachusetts, it's gangbangers, drug dealers, prostitutes and addicts. i love it. i don't know what it is about that place because it's disgusting, but i [ bleep ] love it. i was 14 when i started shooting heroin. normal 14-year-olds aren't shooting heroin.
there's not have many times i can say i've been in my right frame of mind and walked through these doors. >> melanie reddy's prior convictions have usually been misdemeanors related to her drug use. this time she's be here for a month known as common night walking. >> it is prostitution. anyone can be charged with it walking at night in a known prostitution area. >> she hopes the charge will be discharged during her upcoming court appearance. whether she gets out or stays in jail, reddy says she'll be among friends. >> you ever see the boston show "cheers?" it's like where everybody knows your name. when i come in, it's not like i'm alone, there's somebody know here because i've done so much time. boston ain't but so big. this is the only jail for boston, so you always know somebody.
coming up crystal o'reilly confronts a tragic anniversary. an inmate who authorities believe might have shot his girlfriend has something to say to her. >> will you marry me, baby girl. >> and later ja-norris hayes explains the fight. sam higgins... you have frequent heartburn, right ? yeah, it flares up a few days a week. well, we're the two active ingredients in zegerid otc. i'm omeprazole, the leading prescription heartburn medicine. and i'm sodium bicarbonate. i protect him from stomach acid so he can get to work. look, guys, i've already tried a lot of stuff. wow. with zegerid otc, you get 24-hour relief. so, this is goodbye heartburn ? gone. finito. zegerid otc. two ingredients... ...one mission. heartburn solved.
i need close-up. will you marry me, baby girl? i'm serious. give me one of them little rice and bean babies. emily, i love you, baby. >> with the crime sutton has been accused of, it may be a long time before he can start a family. he's been charged with distribution of cocaine for allegedly selling 150 grams to a confidential informant. he's pled not guilty and though he's never been convicted of drug dealing, admits he's no strange tore the drug trade. >> oh, yeah, i've dealt drugs. i'm not going to lie about that. it's just my up bringing, know what i mean? surviving, sell drugs. but i didn't sell those drugs. if convicted, sutton will face a minimum sentence of ten years. but that's not the only serious crime he's accused of. less than a year earlier, a big time gun battle erupted on a boston bridge. he was arrested and charged with
assault and intent to commit murder. he's pled not guilty. >> they say i was on a bridge. two people got shot. i'm allegedly one of the shooters. >> one of the victims was report to be a member of a rival gang. >> allegedly what they're saying is i shot them both. >> why would you shoot your girlfriend? >> i don't know. >> you were carrying a gun? >>. i was not carrying no weapons whatsoever. >> so someone else was shooting? >> i guess so. it wasn't me. >> according to authorities, sutton was the only shooter on the bridge that night. they say he shot the gang member, then presumably by accident shot emily.
>> they just say there's four videos showing a black male in a white t and black jeans and they see an arm and a whole bunch of shots. that's what they're saying. it's america. do you know how many black men in this world that might be wearing black shorts, white t-shirt. that has to be me? >> sutton says after the shots ended, he realized emily was lying on the bridge. she said something is wrong with my chest. i ripped her shirt open and there was three holes in her chest. >> while emily was recovering in the hospital, authorities arrested sutton and charged him with shooting his rival. he wasn't charged for emily's shooting because she backed up his story. >> sometimes i be thinking this ain't even real. like aim really still here?
i haven't spent no time with her since she got shot. i haven't touched her, you know what i mean? for all i know, this could be a figment of my imagination. she really could be dead. >> when it comes to the death of a loved one, krystal o'reilly is clear about reality, especially during this time of year. as she awaits trial for two bank robberies she allegedly committed to support a drug habit, she thinks about her two sons. 2-year-old maddox is being raised by her mother. her first son cameron was born with significant birth defects and died soon after. then her fiancee died shortly afterwards from a drug overdose. >> i lost two of the most important people in my life in less than a year's time. at that point, nothing mattered, absolutely nothing. it didn't matter that i was pregnant, didn't matter my
family was so scared because they knew how i felt. nothing mattered. i just used. three years later, i still haven't forgiven myself. i don't know. usually i don't even cry when i talk about it. this is the first time i've actually had to, like, deal with it, without getting high because i've been using ever since. like my sally says to me all the time, feel, deal and heal. i haven't felt, i haven't dealt and damn sure haven't healed. >> as the anniversaries of both deaths draw closer, o'reilly has asked to see one of the chaplain's, sister o'neill. >> she's going through a bad time with this particular time of year for her. >> kind of rough. >> what's been happening? >> this week is my son's anniversary, three years. sunday will be three years. the exact anniversary. >> this sunday? >> yeah. >> i see you're carrying a picture.
>> that's maddox. >> oh, look, he's sleepy. >> he falls asleep in the weirdest places. it's the small things that keep connected with him. >> that's wonderful. you've got so much to live for, lady. >> i know. >> you're doing well. >> he's what keeps me going. >> i'm just so glad that you're looking at your life the way you are looking at it. i pray that you have hope because that's such a big thing in life. making changes isn't easy, but it's so worth it. >> oh, absolutely. >> you deserve it; and you can really sort of go forward, not only forward in faith, but forward knowing you can make it because being in here is no place to be. shall we pray before you go? >> okay. >> lord, this is your child. this is krystal and you love her, and we want to pray for her and send her forward in faith.
>> i feel it went very well. it was a good call to have her down because she certainly is just going through some pretty deep sorrow. >> give us patience, understanding and love, amen. god bless you. keep you safe. i'm here if you need me. >> thank you. >> god bless. >> you, too. >> the way that i look at it to keep my sanity is that, like, i'm given the time to change me, you know, to change the person that i brought in here. i've taken it as, like, a chance to start all over. >> coming up -- >> they've told my daughter that i'm in school. however, now she's scared to get
happy birthday! >> for the last month, good friends and cell mates melanie reddy and krystal o'reilly have looked out for each other during their stay at bus ton's suffolk county jail. >> you could have threw it away. what was it? [ laughter ]. >> but their time together might almost be up. in a few days, reddy is due in court to face a charge of prostitution that she hopes will be dismissed. if so, she'll be released from the courthouse directly back onto the streets and back to the problems presented by her longstanding drug addiction. >> do you want to get clean? >> sometimes. right now, no. i've had years clean and been a mother and woken up every day to my kid and taken her to the doctors and my mother's for
sunday dinner. i've done all that. i've had the fiancee. i've had the house. i've had all of that. i didn't keep any of it. so what it meant i don't know. the minute something went wrong, went to the only thing i know, drugs and the streets. that's it. drugs and the streets, like that never even existed. >> reddy's 4 1/2-year-old daughter is now being raced by her mother and sister. ready says they still have some contact, although her daughter doesn't know she's in jail. >> they've told my daughter that i'm in school. however, now she's scared to get on the school bus because her mother doesn't come home from school. so i don't know if it's better or worse. my kid's probably the only thing that's ever mattered to me, ever.
she's too good to be around me when i'm getting high. she doesn't deserve that. when i'm not doing the right thing, she has no business being around me. and i have no business being around her. it's a tough pill to swallow because no matter what, i still get high. i thought my kid would keep me clean. unfortunately she didn't. >> right now, if reddy is missing anything, it's the temptations she can find on the streets of boston. >> we got windows in our cells that overlook downtown boston where i run at. people pay millions for that view. we get it for free. i don't even look out the window because it puts me right down there and right about everything that's going on, like i'm missing something. right now if i got out tonight, i know that i'm probably ending up downtown. recovery is not an option right now. i'm not going to get clean. i'm going to go get high. there's always that story, like, you see people get clean and sober. this is the other side. this is the not-so-clean and
not-so-sober side. >> coming up -- >> when you ended up on top, were you punching him. >> ja-norris hayes faces the disciplinary board. >> i got somebody that's going to do me a favor. >> robert sutton sends a singing telegram to his girlfriend, jail-style. ♪ i understand you're feeling down ♪ [ female announcer ] we always try to save you even more money
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due to mature subject matter, viewer discretion is advised. wait. we got a challenge for your guys. >> do the running man. >> krystal o'reilly continues her time at the suffolk county jail in boston awaiting trial for allegedly robbing two banks, but her life in jail has taken a major turn. her cell mate and good friend, melanie reddy recently had her prostitution charge dismissed and has returned to the streets. >> the neighborhood that i'm from, the armpit of massachusetts, it's gangbangers, drug dealers, prostitutes and addicts. i love it. i don't know what it is about that place because it's disgusting, but i [ bleep ] love it.
>> i know how it is being out there, especially when you're not ready. i want to really try to change, but she blatantly said she wasn't ready. i respect that. i knew she wanted to use, so i didn't talk much about getting clean. >> not surprisingly, o'reilly received distressing news about her friend. >> we heard she od'd. that was the first time i cried. nobody knew anything further than that. they just knew she od'd where the day she got out. >> i got the letter a couple days later. it was such a relief to know it was written after the fact. she's obviously still afraid. >> krystal, what's up, chickie? wednesday i shot dope and died. the fear isn't as strong as it was because, truth be told, i don't give a [ bleep ] about anything.
it's actually quite disturbing. oh, well, all bets are off about anything. it's actually quite disturbing. oh, well, all bets are off about anything. don't get too comfortable not seeing me because it won't get too long. as we both know, [ bleep ] happens. i've got to go because obviously [ bleep ] isn't too pretty right now. i love you more than you know and thank you for everything. i do appreciate and mean it. love you and miss you, mel. i don't even know how i feel about it. i just hope she gets it. >> reality is also hitting hard for ja-norris hayes over the jail's segregation unit. >> never been in segregation before, you know. >> after he was attacked by another inmate wielding a sock full of batteries, hayes is in segregation to await his decision plain air hearing. while he didn't start the fight,
he quickly gained the upper hand. he ignored orders to stop fighting. it's up to the disciplinary officer, deputy strangle to decide how long hayes must stay in segregation. >> did you fight back at all? swinging the sock at you. what did you do then? >> i blocked it and rushed him to defend myself. >> right. >> i ended up on top of him, and that was it. >> when you ended up on top of him, were you punching into him at that point in time? >> i really can't say, sir. >> all right. that's where the problem comes in. it's good and well to be defensive, right? but there's a point in time where if you get the upper hand and then continue going, that's fighting as well. that's how that's going to work. did you know the guy? why would he come at you? >> i'm not from here.
i'm from georgia. >> i understand. you have no idea what his issue is. i'm sure he didn't randomly pick you out of a crowd. do you know what he came at you for? >> i think because of a lack of communication. a small misunderstanding. that's what i'm figuring. >> over what though? that's what i'm trying to figure out. i don't know anything about you. i don't know anything about this other guy. but you don't know? >> no, i don't know. >> i'll see if i can get it from the other guy. i'll watch the tape and get back to you on that and come back and give you my findings and tell you how much time you got to spend here, if any. i'll take you back upstairs. >> i never been in trouble here. >> i know that. >> come lately robert sutton has avoided making the kind of mistake to land him in segregation. but a different kind of slipup has people rarely put him on crutches.
>> playing basketball, heard it pop, can't really walk on it. it's getting better. i'm all right. >> you want me to match that? i'll match that. give him back the crutches. hold up. >> sutton hasn't let his injury slow him down, particularly when it comes to planning a surprise for his girlfriend emily. >> i need to figure out something i can do for her. >> to do that, sutton has enlisted the help of another inmate on his unit. >> he's going to have me sing for her so she can feel good today. >> he's good at what he does. he's good at what he does, you know? he can sing. he can really hit the high notes. >> i caught him singing on the phone and the next thing you know the whole unit was drawn to it. that's when i knew the boy had talent. >> my way to show my
appreciation, i got somebody that's going to do me a favor. are you ready? just because you're locked up, that doesn't mean you can't figure out some time of way to make your loved one feel better. know what i mean? ♪ i understand you're feeling down ♪ ♪ it's probably cuz i ain't around for you ♪ >> i can't hold a note for -- yeah, i can't hold a note. ♪ i know you probably need me now ♪ ♪ really not much i can do >> i mean it's another way of going up and over to show her you love her. ♪ at the present i'm dealing with my past ♪ ♪ hopefully there's a future that can last between us ♪ >> anybody can say it. you can say i love you, i love you, i love you. to the best of your ability in jail, that's the best way to go.
♪ i need you >> at the end of the day, that's all i got. that's really all i got, her and my mother. so emily, i love you. ♪ can't take my love away ♪ i'm yours ♪ i'm yours ♪ i'm yours >> i love you, baby girl. i love you. she says she didn't expect that one. she wasn't reedy for that one. i told you, you the man, baby. coming up, melanie reddy is back in jail. and robert sutton gets the visit he's longed for. >> will you marry me?
melanie reddy spent a month in the suffolk county jail, awaiting trial on a prostitution charge. the case was eventually dismissed. reddy has now returned to the streets of boston. but she knew her future was less than certain. >> i've done years. i've done months. i keep coming in and out because every time i use, this is my end result. >> the day she was released from jail, reddy was treated for a heroin overdose. three weeks later, she's back in the jail's intake department. she was arrested for being under the influence of drugs in a public place. >> seriously. leave me alone. >> when melanie reddy came in the last time, she was certainly dope sick. dope sick is somebody coming
from the street, they haven't had a fix in a few hours. it's when your body is starting to realize, hey, where is that drug? and all of those symptoms, the nausea, vomiting, cramping, seizures, everything, all those things are now coming to the surface. >> reddy will detox in the jail's infirmary, a process that can take anywhere from a few days to two weeks. her close friend and former cell mate krystal o'reilly says she's relieved to have her back. >> i don't wish this on anybody, but because i knew what she was going out to do, i kind of was hoping to see her walk back through the door because at least i know she's safe. i know we still have that. >> while she waits for her friend to be released from tin firmly, oh really turns her focus to rebuilding her own life, especially with her 2-year-old son and mother who is raising him. today she's making cards.
in jail, that takes creativity. >> i'm making crayons with tampons. we don't have access to crayons, color pencils, anything like that. i'm going to get creative. what we do is take a tampon and either a magazine or newspaper, and you rub it on the color. magazines work a little better. they don't usually come through her frequently. so you make due. different stencils. i make stationery for my mom, my son, my nana. pretty much anyone i write to gets some sort of design. >> o'reilly speaks to her mother and son by phone once a week, but visits are few and far between.
>> the things that i'm missing, like watching my son grow up. his first snow. she sent me pictures of him being in the snow, all you can see is like this much. everything is all covered up. you can see he's so red. you can tell he's smiling because his cheeks are up here in his eyes. i'm missing all this. >> there are certain moments of robert sutton's life he'd be happy to forget. after several shots were fired on an east boston bridge, sutton was charged with attempted murder of a rival gang member. sutton's girl friend emily was also shot during the incident. sutton was arrested before emily fully recovered and says the trauma of the night has stayed with him. >> i seen a lot in my life. i never had nightmares until i looked at her laying on the floor with bullet holes in her chest. i miss her touch.
>> sutton hopes that after today he'll be able to put those memories to rest. emily has received approval for a visit. >> while authorities claim the bullets that accidentally hit emily came from sutton's gun, emily supports sutton's story and maintains the gunfire came from an unknown assailant. >> i have a scar right here. that's one of them. i got that one in the middle and then this one. the first bullet, i didn't feel it. i just stood there. then i see the guy running to me. he did it again, and i fell, but i was awake the whole time. >> despite her wounds, emily says her main concern was for sutton. >> to be honest, i just wanted him to be next to him. i love him. he's my baby. >> just being able to touch her, that's really -- i'm anxious to give her a hug. >> normally, the jail does not permit contact visits prior to conviction.
>> he'll be with you in a moment. >> but due to filming restrictions in the visiting areas, officials set up a temporary visiting station that could accommodate our cameras. >> how do you feel? >> nervous. i'm really nervous right now. >> hello, pretty lady. >> hi. how are you doing? >> come here sweetheart. >> oh, my god. i missed you. you look cute. >> thank you. you, too. look at you, man. >> it feels like a dream. >> it's going to be all right. i get to touch you. that's all i wanted. >> i love you. >> i love you, too, baby girl. >> for a second, i thought i was dead. but i feel better now. >> your chest and everything okay? >> i'm good. all right, i guess. you know -- it's healing. >> that one is almost gone.
>> what about this one? >> that one is almost gone. that's the only one that hurts, though. how are you doing? >> i'm all right. perfectly fine now. i tell you that. perfectly fine. >> i miss you. >> i miss you, too, baby. >> ooh, that hurt. will you marry me? >> yes, i will. >> i know you will. i want to kiss you, too. >> can we kiss? yes? no? >> tell everybody i said high. tell wee-wee to stay off the streets. >> i love you. >> i love you, too. god bless. >> i love you.
love you, too, baby. >> does it hurt to see him? >> yeah, yeah. >> that was a beautiful visit. i still can't get the smile off my face. that should tell you everything right there. >> are you going to marry him? >> yes, when he comes home, yes, i'll be happy to. >> coming up -- >> coming up -- >> i feel like cookie monster. >> it's a happy day for ja-norris hayes, but a heartbreaking one for krystal o'reilly. >> i see you soon.
inmate wielding a sock full of batteries. to make matters worse, he received ten days in segregation for going beyond defending himself to pummeling the other inmate. today hayes is in for a rare pleasant surprise. every once in a while jail social workers, in cooperation with a local charity, pass out small gift bags of toiletries and gift bags to the inmates. >> what did you get? snicker bar, looks like some shampoo, breakfast drink, kool-aid, cookies and a deodorant. wow, nice package. they take care of you. they're not bad people. you don't get sweets in here. i can't wait to take a bite of my snickers. >> like all segregation inmates, hayes is handcuffs during his recreation time outside the cell.
the restraint is supposed to prevent inmates from fighting, but in this case it's a hindrance to his ability to enjoy his snack. >> this is awesome. i feel like cookie monster. >> the day also brings one of the few measures in krystal o'reilly's life, a visit with her mother and son. but this pleasure has a bittersweet side. o'reilly is currently awaiting trial for allegedly robbing two banks and could face up to ten years in prison. >> going to see him, i'm not sad. but when he's leaving, i tend to be a little sad. >> go see mommy?
>> she's been here for six months. her son doesn't get to see her that often because i have to work all the time and i have custody of him. but we're on our way upstairs. >> i love her to death. she's my best friend. i do everything -- well, i don't do everything. i tell my mom everything. she's real supportive. she's really good with my son. so i love her. >> go see mommy? >> go mommy. draw picture. >> going to draw pictures with mommy and color. >> the door open. >> the door opened, yes. here we go. >> he'll be 3 in may. my god, he's getting so big, so big. it's crazy. my nana calls him half pint because she looks just like his father, just like his father. >> who is that? >> mommy! >> wave to mommy. >> hi! >> where are you going?
>> come here. >> big hug. >> hugs. i love you. crayons. you want to sit in a chair? >> it puts everything into perspective as to why i need to do what i need to do. >> you help nana cook? do you eat spaghetti you like spaghetti. you should see what we get to eat you want to say ewe! >> he's doing things like talking good, singing, playing one, two, three, freeze. now you freeze. go. freeze, freeze. i have to take this like a blessing.
the way i was living out there, i wasn't there with him anyway. i was there physically, but not emotionally. >> are you going to leave? go bye-bye. >> mommy, nana come? >> yeah, nana's coming. >> coming? >> no, mamma's not coming, baby. i love you. i love you. bye, baby. >> come on big boy. >> ready? give mommy kiss one more time. >> i love you. i'll see you soon. >> soon. >> be a good girl. >> good girl. >> i will. you be good. >> you be good for nana?